This lower body workout will keep you on your toes, with minimal equipment required.
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This lower body workout will keep you on your toes, with minimal equipment required.
Squatting and not seeing the results? There's a reason behind it. One of the questions I get asked frequently from ladies is, ‘Why isn’t my butt growing?I squat several times a day, but I do not see any changes’. The majority of these issues boil down to glute activation: not properly activating your glutes before you go into an intense leg day workout.
Thinking about forgoing the inevitable leg day? Think again. With a few household items, your home can become your gym, too. This innovative water pack workout by PumpUp member @ibsfl will have your legs burning all over. These compound movements will build herculean strength and power in your lower body. No need for a kettlebell or any fancy equipment. A water pack workout is perfect if you're getting fit on a budget.
Who says you need a gym or dumbbells to get fit? Create your own functional fitness station at home with this water bottle workout. PumpUp member @rachaelgervais filled up a gallon-sized jug with water to create some extra resistance. She used chairs as stand-ins for plyometric boxes. Get creative with what you already have!
Get fit fast with this full body fat-burning HIIT workout. This circuit focuses on bodyweight moves to get the job done. As long as you have an exercise ball, you can do it at home, in the gym, or on the go. Try doing a headstand for an extra core challenge during the exercise ball leg raises. Workout by PumpUp member @jatie.
Exercise Ball Leg Raises (modified: laying)
Balance your upper body on your forearms and keep an exercise ball at your feet. Squeeze the exercise ball up until your body is extended into a full headstand. Lower your legs down with control and repeat.
Modification: Lay flat on your back with your spine in a neutral position. Raise your legs toward the ceiling while squeezing the exercise ball with your feet. Slowly lower back down to the ground and repeat.
Begin in a standing position, with your legs spread at a shoulder's width apart. Lower your glutes down to wards the floor, making sure that your knees don't extend past your feet. Push your legs back up to a standing position and repeat.
Modification: Hold a kettlebell (or even your puppy) to your chest for an extra challenge
Stability ball knee-ins to push-up
Start in a raised plank, with the tops of your ankles balancing on the stability ball. Keep your upper body in the same position, brace your core, and use your lower abs to bring your knees towards your chest. Make sure that the stability ball follows through with your feet. Roll your legs back into a raised plank position, and lower your chest to the floor for a push-up. Repeat.
Around the world jump squats
Begin in a standing position, keeping your legs at a stance that is slightly wider than your shoulders. Lower your body down into a squat, jump your body upwards, and switch directions. Repeat the squat and return to centre, then rotate your next jump to the opposite side. Repeat.
Burpees with a tuck jump
Begin in a raise plank position. Lower your body towards the floor, bracing your core throughout the movement and keeping your elbows pressed towards your sides. Push your body up into a plank, hop your feet towards your chest, jump as high as you can while tucking your knees toward your chest, and hop your body back into a plank. Repeat.
Perform each exercise for 30 seconds, with 20 seconds of rest in between each exercise. Rest for 1-2 minutes between each circuit. Repeat the full body fat-burning HIIT workout for two to three times more, or until 15 to 20 minutes have elapsed.
Did you give this full body fat-burning HIIT workout a try? Pin it for later so that you can do it again! Let us know what your favorite bodyweight moves are in the comments below.
When you think about weightlifting shoes, Converse sneakers might be the last thing to cross your mind. Though canvas Chuck Taylor All-Stars (colloquially known as Chucks) are regarded as an emblem of creative expression with widespread and nearly iconic appeal, you'll be surprised to find that they're pretty popular among powerlifters too. The next time you're pausing between reps, scan the floor of your gym. Among the weighted plates, half-filled water bottles, and dingy towels, your little eye might spy somebody sporting a pair of Chucks. But why? For fashion? Of course! Chucks have found fans in Harry Potter and even the First Lady. However, original Converse All-Star sneakers are a decent option for resistance training. While some people prefer to lift without shoes or splurge on more expensive lifting shoes, Chucks reasonably achieve the same purpose.
They aren't running shoes
Sorry running shoes, you can't lift with us. When you perform heavier lifts, it's important to ground your feet on the floor so that you can stabilize yourself. They're your base of support, as you transmit energy through your feet to lift. Padded running shoes absorb shock and thus, energy that could otherwise be used for your lifts. The more energy you transfer through your feet, the heavier you'll be able to lift (all while looking like a boss). With arched running shoes, you recruit other muscles to compensate for the lack of force you would be able to derive from grounding your feet on the floor. This can undermine your technique over time and increase your risk of injury.
They have flat soles
Chucks have thin and flat soles that don't compress under a heavy load. Because older Chucks don't have any arch support, your feet will be in close contact with the floor and you'll be at liberty to push through your heels. You'll also train the stabilizing muscles in your feet. This will eventually help to protect your lower extremities against injury and it'll make your lifts more efficient. You'll hit depth with your squats and maintain better form as you progress.
They're comfy and affordable
Chucks are light, durable (wear them for ALL the years), and their canvas build makes them fit like a sock. If you so desire, Chucks are an ideal first-step to help you progress to barefoot lifting. While Adidas powerlifting shoes sell for roughly $190 USD, you can purchase Converse sneakers for a fraction of the price at $30-50 USD.
The Converse All Star Chuck II isn't great for lifting
In July 2015, Converse unveiled a redesigned model of their classic All-Star shoes for the first time in 98 years. While the All-Star Chuck II looks almost identical to its predecessor, it no longer bears the qualities that make Chucks a desirable option for lifting: arch support and affordability (to some degree). A foam lining cushions the soles of the All-Star Chuck II, providing a form of arch support that would make it more difficult for lifters to exert force through the ground. Although the updated sneakers don't cost as much as lifting shoes, they do ring the cash register in at $75 for high-tops and $70 for low-tops.
Lifting shoes, on the other hand, might be worth the splurge if heavier squats are your goal. They don't have any extra sole padding, but they have slightly raised heels, which gives your ankle more mobility and allows you to squat deeper. It'll also correct potential stance deficits, keeping you upright, reducing pressure on your lower back and recruiting the right muscles to help you lift with better form and greater efficiency. But when you're deadlifting, you really want shoes that are as flat as possible.
If you do have ankle problems, weightlifting shoes will also give you more stability. Their hard soles will ensure that you're able to transfer tons of force into the ground and your feet will be able to have a tighter grip on the floor. With better balance and stability, you'll improve your technique and reduce your risk of injury simultaneously.
So, are Chucks good for lifting? While the new Chuck II shoes aren't ideal, original Converse sneakers are decent. They have flat soles that resist compression and they're affordable. But depending on your technique, ankle mobility, level of intensity, and budget, you might want to splurge on a pair of weightlifting shoes. What are your favourite shoes for lifting? Do you wear shoes at all? Let us know in the comments below!
Ramp up the intensity and the insanity. This fat burning HIIT workout will get your heart beating out of your chest in a matter of minutes. Do a small warm up before doing these HIIT moves and prepare to get sweaty.
Begin in a raised plank position, with your shoulders in line with your wrists. Lower each forearm down to the floor, maintaining the plank. While you're in the low plank, drop your hips down to one side of the mat, then twist them to the other side. Walk your hands up into starting position and repeat.
Begin in a raised plank and lower your body into a wide stance push-up. Upon raising your body back to start position, promptly jump both of your feet towards your forearms, then jump them back into plank. Repeat.
Pulse down into a squat and jump straight up into the air. Land softly, and go back into a squat before you jump up again. Repeat.
Begin with your hands planted firmly on the ground, feet resting next to a wall. Slowly walk your hands toward the wall and walk your feet up the wall, until your body makes a 45 degree angle. Bring your body back down into a plank position and do a push-up. Repeat.
Loved this fat burning HIIT workout by PumpUp member @jatie and @xogingy? Let us know in the comments below! What are your favorite fat burning HIIT moves?
This is your summer. Own it, don't settle for less, just start. PumpUp and Coach Melissa Lepage (@coachmelissa) put together a series of daily mini fitness challenges for the entire month of June to help you focus on your health goals with laser-like precision. These challenges focus on different aspects of your wellbeing: from nutrition, to exercise, to sleep, to hydration. Every time you complete a challenge, you'll earn points that might earn you some PumpUp swag. Take the June 1 challenge for example: every time you finish 50 squats that day, you'll earn 50 points. Tally up your points each Saturday in June and share about them on PumpUp to be considered for some swag!
You in? Sign up for the #ChallengeMe email newsletter for daily reminders and tips!
What's more: participating in the challenge will get you $10 off of all items over $20 at RoniTaylorFit. Use the code: Pumpup10
*Revised version of the original #ChallengeMe calendar
Monday June 1 - 50 squats
Let's get down to business to defeat the buns...with squats. For every set of 50 bodyweight squats on June 1st, earn 50 points towards #ChallengeMe. Experiment with different types of squats if you can. Here are some awesome bodyweight squats that you can try for the challenge.
Tuesday June 2 - Healthy snack
Never let the munchies get the best of you. Snack smart by planning ahead! Do away with packaged snacks and instead opt for fruits, veggies, and nuts as your go-to ingredients to tide you over before the next meal. For every healthy snack idea that you share on June 2, earn 20 points. Here are some great ideas for healthy snacks.
Wednesday June 3 - Try your hand at pilates
If your workout was easy, it probably wasn't pilates. It's a system of strengthening and stretching exercises that engages your core, mobilizes your spine, and builds strength and flexibility. If you're already following a Blogilates challenge this June, you're off to a good start. You'll earn 25 points for every 15 minutes of pilates that you do on June 3. Here's a great resource that lists the best Blogilates videos for abs (20 minutes or less).
Thursday June 4- Share your water intake of the day
It should be a natural instinct to drink enough water on a daily basis, but that isn't necessarily the case. Whether you guzzle water by the gallon or sip it slowly and surely, be aware of your water intake on June 4 and post about it on PumpUp to earn a total of 25 points for the day. Here are 5 great reasons to drink water.
Friday June 5 - Lunges
Lunge now, lunch later. Start off your day with a set (or two, or three) of lunges! Perform them with weights for an extra challenge. Bring the weights overhead to give a bonus burn to your core, shoulders, and traps. For every set of 12 lunges per leg, you'll earn 30 pts. Bored of basic lunges? Here are some creative lunge variations that you can try!
Saturday June 6 - Sweaty Selfie
Work hard and share a Sweaty Selfie on PumpUp after you finish doing an activity that you love. It should also be something that gets you real sweaty, real quick. You'll get 40 points for each sweaty selfie that you post on June 6 (from separate workouts), plus 20 points if you tally up the total number of points that you accumulated over the course of the first week.
Sunday June 7 - Plank Challenge
This time, you won't be walking the plank. Your body will serve as a plank to earn you points. For every 1 min of plank that you perform on June 7, you'll earn 45 pts towards #ChallengeMe. Be sure to post your plank time on PumpUp to be considered. Creative plank variations are all welcome!
Monday June 8- Abs
Get abs-olutely incredible abs today! It'll be the main focus of today's #ChallengeMe workout. For every 15 minutes of abs that you do today, you'll earn 50 points towards #ChallengeMe. Here are some Blogilates videos for abs to get you started, as well as an intense standing ab workout to help you take it to the next level.
Tuesday June 9 - Healthy Breakfast
Start your day the right way. Breakfast is a pretty egg-cellent idea. Share the recipe and photo of a healthy, non-packaged breakfast on June 9 to earn 20 points. Short on ideas? Try this Apple Chai Quinoa Porridge. Short on time? Try this 10 minute Tofu Scramble! If you feel like slurping a portion of your healthy breakfast instead, check out our smoothie library (you might be surprised with what you find!).
Wednesday June 10 - HIIT
HIIT us with your best shot and give your workout your all. For every 15 minutes of HIIT that you do on June 10, you'll earn 25 #ChallengeMe points. Get started with this 20 minute full-body HIIT workout or try your hand at these 7 fat-burning HIIT moves.
Thursday June 11 - Green Tea - Spend some quali-tea time with yourself and sip on a cup of green tea today to earn 25 #ChallengeMe points, because you're tea-riffic. Green tea may selectively increase fat burning and apparently helps regulate glucose levels, slowing the rise of blood sugar after eating. Here's a #tbt to some migh-tea matcha green tea recipes.
Friday June 12 - Crunches and V-Sits. You only need a few body weight moves to strengthen your core. Earn 30 #ChallengeMe points for every set of 25 crunches and 1 minute of V-sits.
Saturday June 13 - Best Advice. What's your best advice for living a healthy lifestyle? You are only confined by the walls you make for yourself. Challenge yourself daily and find joy in being healthy. Here are some of the best pieces of advice from other PumpUp members. You'll earn 45 points for sharing a PumpUp post with words of encouragement, and you'll earn 20 points after you share your total #ChallengeMe score for the week!
Sunday June 14 - Weights. What's your best advice for living a healthy lifestyle? You are only confined by the walls you make for yourself. Challenge yourself daily and find joy in being healthy. Here are some of the best pieces of advice from other PumpUp members. You'll earn 45 points for sharing a PumpUp post with words of encouragement, and you'll earn 20 points after you share your total #ChallengeMe score for the week!
Monday, June 15 - Upper body. Remove "can't" from your vocabulary. Improve your posture and grow stronger every day. For every 15 mins of upper body exercises that you do today, you'll earn 50 #ChallengeMe points. Here's a great upper body workout that you can do with a partner!
Tuesday, June 16- Healthy Lunch- You're probably eating your lunch on the go. Plan ahead and you'll make a plan to succeed. Pack a healthy lunch today to earn 20 #ChallengeMe points. What are your best tips for packing and planning out healthy meals? If you need some ideas, here are some light and lovely lunch ideas to help you through the week. Make this un-'beat'able beet salad if you're in a rush, or try these edamame recipes if you're looking to try something new!
Wednesday, June 17- Cardio - Yes, we're putting you down for cardio. Do just 15 minutes to get your heart pumping! Simple body weight exercises can do the trick if you don't have a gym or if running and swimming isn't your thing.
Thursday, June 18- Lemon Water- When life gives you lemons, drink lemon water. It can improve your digestive health and jump start your metabolism! Each glass can earn you 25 #ChallengeMe points today. Learn how lemon water can benefit you, and find our best lemon water recipe here.
Friday, June 19- Jumping rope- We're jumpin' jumpin'. Grab a jumping rope and skip intensely for at least 5 minutes to earn 30 #ChallengeMe points. Whether you treat it as a mild warmup or a workout in itself, jump rope will help you burn tons of calories, fast. If you don't have a jumping rope, just mimic the same skipping motion with your arms and legs.
Saturday, June 20-Show lots of love to your #PumpUpFam. After you're done tallying the points you earned this week, share who your @PumpUp inspiration is in your caption. Each post that you dedicate to another PumpUp member will earn you 40 #ChallengeMe points
Sunday, June 21- Biceps and triceps: Wanna show off on #FlexFriday in a major way? Do so by working on your biceps and triceps today. Every 15 minutes of bicep/tricep exercises will earn you 45 #ChallengeMe points!
Monday, June 22- Lower body: There's a reason why so many songs are being sung about our lower bodies. It's where most of our strength comes from. Lower body exercises will enhance your performance in sports and various other compound movements. What's more, you'll improve your balance, stamina, and risk of injury. Squats are just the starting point. Here's a simple lower body workout that you need to do today. Every 15 minutes of lower body exercise will earn you 50 points towards #ChallengeMe.
Tuesday, June 23- Healthy Dinner: End your day the right way and make smart choices for dinner (after all, you won't be eating for another 8 hours...or more). An important part of having a healthy dinner comes with balancing out your day with a healthy breakfast and lunch. Timing is key: don't eat too late, or you might overeat at night. Chew slowly and avoid fatty foods, as they're harder to digest and might disrupt your sleeping patterns. You'll earn 20 #ChallengeMe points for sharing a photo about your healthy dinner! These almond recipes might spark some inspiration.
Wednesday, June 24- Outdoor Workout: The sun is shining, the birds are chirping, and the great outdoors are calling your name. Start walking (or running) on sunshine: you might have a more effective workout when you're outside. Your body will work harder to adapt to changes in terrain, and you'll enhance your mood and self esteem. For every 15 minutes that you spend exercising outdoors, you'll earn 25 #ChallengeMe points.
Thursday, June 25- Smoothies- If you've been on PumpUp for awhile, you'll probably notice one thing. Above all else, smoothies are our favorite things ever. There is an untapped of wealth of smoothie recipes waiting to be discovered on PumpUp. Share a great and creative smoothie recipes to earn 25 #ChallengeMe points. Here are just a few ideas.
Friday, June 26- Push-ups: Drop down and give us 20 (no, really). Try to do 20 push-ups today to earn 20 #ChallengeMe points. Don't worry if you can't do 20 all in one go: spread it out throughout the day, and get better. Get stronger. The push-up is a classic no-equipment exercise that works most major muscle groups. Here are a few push-up variations that you can definitely look forward to trying.
Saturday, June 27- Workout Outfit: Funnily enough, we attach symbolic meaning to our athletic clothing. When we feel confident in our workout clothes, we may become more motivated (and even excited) to exercise. You're allowed to feel good in your workout gear at any shape or size. Flaunt it today: share a picture of your favorite workout clothes to earn 45 #ChallengeMe points. Remember to share how many points you accumulated this week in order to be considered for some PumpUp Swag!
Sunday, June 28- Try a new yoga pose: Often, the most difficult thing about yoga is beginning it. It's a practice. Begin and get stronger. Try a new yoga pose today, share a photo about it on PumpUp, and earn 45 #ChallengeMe points for every yoga post that you make!
Monday, June 29- 50 jumping sumo squats: Work your legs with some wide legged squats! Do a small jump as you ascend from each squat. For every set of 50 jumping sumo squats that you do, you'll earn 50 points towards #ChallengeMe. Experiment with different types of squats if you can. Find some other awesome bodyweight squats that you can try for the challenge.
Tuesday, June 30- Cheat Smart. It's the last day of our June Challenge! You deserve a treat for all of your hard work. Share your favorite healthy treat on PumpUp! You might be able to find some inspiration from our ultimate BBQ recipe guide and from these other posts. Why should you treat yo' self? It might lead to better results.
Have any questions or feedback? Let us know in the comments below!
Cover photo courtesy of PumpUp member @randy_dizon.
Get the ball rolling with another full-body HIIT workout by PumpUp member @jatie. With these 7 high intensity interval training moves, you're bound to burn several calories. Your heart will feel like it's nearly beating out of its chest, in a good way of course.
Balance your feet on a stability ball. Keep your hands on the ground so that your body is in a straight line. Bring your knees and feet towards your chest, rolling the stability ball throughout the movement. Return knees, feet, and stability ball to starting position, then lower your upper body down into a push-up.
Step one foot onto a stool or a box and raise the other knee upwards. When you descend, bring the leg that stepped on the stool into a back lunge, keeping your front knee bent at a ninety degree angle with your ankle. For an extra challenge, hold a pair of 5-10 lb dumbbells at your side.
Begin in a wide-legged squat position. Lower your body down into a squat, maintaining proper form. As you rise from the squat, jump your feet a little closer together and lower down into another squat. Bring your feet together, squat, then jump your feet as wide apart as you can. Repeat.
Begin in a push-up position and lower your body parallel to the ground. Raise your body, jump your feet towards your forearms, then jump upward as high as you can, tucking your knees toward your upper body as you jump.
Perform a wide-legged squat forward, then jump so that you make a 90 degree rotation, descending into another squat. Keep doing this, so that you're jumping and rotating your entire body throughout the movement.
Begin with your body in a full plank position, shoulders directly above your forearms. Jump both of your feet towards your forearms, then promptly jump back to a plank. Repeat.
Begin with your hands on the ground and your feet resting on the stability ball. Use your feet to roll the ball towards your upper body, piking your lower body up towards the air so that it looks like a downward facing dog. Roll your body back to starting position.
Perform each exercise in this full-body HIIT workout for 30 seconds, with 15-30 seconds of rest in between. After completing the 7 exercises, rest for 1-2 minutes, then repeat the circuit again for 2-3 times.
Loved this full-body HIIT workout? Tag your attempt at it on Instagram with #TeamPumpUp! Have an awesome 20-minute workout routine to show us? Share it with the PumpUp Community.
This is a post by PumpUp member @cicilovinthis
Social media is an incredibly powerful medium for motivation. I sat down one day and thought to myself, “How can I help motivate people like me? People who want to become healthier versions of themselves?”
This is how I came up with my social media challenge: one where everyone can help you reach your goal. It all starts with this picture. You post it to any social media site. Wait a couple days to ensure you get as much likes as possible.
Then you post a video to YouTube doing the amount of squats challenged. Also tag others in the video to do this challenge. This is a great way to test yourself and others. Make a community of support and motivation just like the pumpupapp community!
I hope that this challenge is fulfilling for you, both physically and mentally.
Thanks for squatting, PumpUp! Check out our full #MyResolution photo challenge here.
When in doubt, squat it out! What’s the most awesome squat variation you can think of? Share a photo about it on PumpUp for a chance to win some swag! We love love love PumpUp member @doogiebear’s squat outdoors! Good luck!
Full challenge here: http://blog.pumpup.co/tagged/challenge
Brace yourselves. Wall-sits are coming. See how long you can do it for and share a photo of yourself performing the exercise! Bonus? Reblog to challenge your followers to do a wall-sit with you and see who can hold it for longer! PumpUp member bangerz10 loves to pass the time during her #wallsit by singing her favourite song. She adds weight when she can!
Check out the FULL challenge here: http://blog.pumpup.co/tagged/challenge
Reblog to try this upper body workout performed by PumpUp member @emjoy88 and her workout partner! It consists of push-ups, squats, and jumps!
Spread positivity by motivating somebody to get a good Sweaty Sunday workout in for the holidays!
On the first day of FITmas my trainer made me do…
Your daily FITmas challenge: Drink more water
Here’s an interesting Workout Wednesday. For every like this post gets on PumpUp by tomorrow, see if you can complete at least this many squats for the rest of the month. How you choose to pace it is up to you, but do what you can with proper form and be sure to include rest days. Take us up on our Instagram likes for an extra challenge (Y). Photo cred to PumpUp’s amazing amazing @honeyinacidland
You may have heard of compound exercise, you probably even incorporate some of its aspects in your routine. However, you probably weren’t aware of all of its positive effects, and how it can help almost anyone achieve their fitness goals. Compound exercises, simply defined, are multi-joint exercises that utilize many muscle groups. Common compound exercises include the bench press, the deadlift, and the squat. Other exercises often considered compound exercises include pull-ups, military press and rows. So, what is so important about these types of exercises, and how will they help you to achieve your unique fitness goals?
When it comes to fitness, people usually want to improve body composition, improve athletic performance, or a combination. The beauty of compound exercise is that they accomplish all of these goals by working towards increasing muscle gain, decreasing fat, and increasing overall conditioning. Compound exercise is going to allow you to be the most efficient at the gym, and finish your workout in the shortest amount of time. For those trying to lose fat, or “tone”, compound exercise is extremely beneficial as a high number of calories are burned during these exercises. Also, calories are burned for 24-48 hours after this type of high intensity movements, through what is commonly referred to as the “after-burn” effect.
Compound exercises target many muscle groups at a time, allowing for maximum strength and maximum results. Compound movements actually release a huge amount of beneficial hormones, which promote the growth of muscle and the loss of fat. These movements, if done regularly, will allow you to see the best overall results the fastest, and will allow an individual to increase their overall strength levels quickly. Compound exercises also increase core strength, strengthen tendons and develop stabilizer muscles.
Tips on adding Compound movements to your routine:
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About the author:
Michael is a fitness enthusiast who works daily to achieve his fitness and athletic goals. He works as a personal trainer at Golden Glide Fitness, and has his honors bachelors degree in Medical Sciences. He works constantly to build his expertise in both nutrition and training.